Silverstein has asked officials to squeeze another office building onto the site and diminish the girth of Libeskind's towers.
That's not stupid.
I don't clearly see his interest though.
Silverstein has asked officials to squeeze another office building onto the site and diminish the girth of Libeskind's towers.
That's not stupid.
I don't clearly see his interest though.
Interestingly, the paper version of "WIRED" magazine was "showcasing" a "green building" plan that had been given an award and if I remember right, selected for construction downtown NYC. It was somewhat tragic to be holding it in one's hands, and the events that "clouded" its excellent design and projected execution. "Scientific American" (who once had "the world's tallest windmill", designed by Stanford White on his Nissequogue, NY estate on Long Island, for pumping water, covered in shingles, its interior structure diagrammed, and begun as a NYC magazine) had also major skyscrapers I remember in its issue. I see also Prince Charles is against them, though the Maharishi would like one in the jungle of Sao Paulo, Brazil for 50,000 people to live out their lives, from birth to death, (Brasilia's streets a "bow and arrow" from the air.) Also about the same time was a skyscraper design from Germany with a GE like windmill in the middle of two curved joined towers. Will "green" issues be considered in the new construction?
(Edited by georgejmyersjr at 12:27 pm on July 22, 2003)
9/11 Victims Angry Over WTC Construction
Sun Jul 20,10:52 AM ET *Add Top Stories - AP to My Yahoo!
NEW YORK - A group representing the families of Sept. 11 victims has criticized Gov. George Pataki for allowing construction where the World Trade Center's twin towers once stood.
The Port Authority is constructing four emergency exits for a temporary trade center train station set to open in November. One of the structures will stand where the trade center's north tower was.
"I feel betrayed, and it's very painful," Patricia Reilly, whose sister, Lorraine Lee, was killed in the attack, told The New York Post in Sunday editions.
The Coalition for 9/11 Families is asking New York's Democratic senators, Chuck Schumer and Hillary Rodham Clinton (news - web sites), to sponsor a federal law barring more construction in the space, the Post said.
Port Authority spokesman Greg Trevor said the exits are in the best positions to evacuate the temporary station in the event of an emergency, and that they would be removed in about three years when the permanent train station opens.
Clinton and Schumer have only said that they have had "very useful meetings" with family members.
July 21, 2003
At Helm of Trade Center Site, as He Always Planned to Be
By CHARLES V. BAGLI and EDWARD WYATT
There are no pessimists in real estate. Even so, the relentless optimism of Larry A. Silverstein stands out. Only two years ago, he was just another New York developer with nothing grander to his name than an aging office tower at 120 Broadway. His high hopes for prominence were invested in an improbable pursuit of control of the World Trade Center, a quest that only he seemed to take seriously.
Last week, Mr. Silverstein's high hopes of early 2001 seemed, if anything, too modest. He emerged victorious in the struggle for control of ground zero, elbowing aside Daniel Libeskind, the architect whose design for the trade center site was chosen by Gov. George E. Pataki. Suddenly he seems to have ascended to the lofty circles occupied by real estate giants with names like Durst, Resnick, Ross, Roth, Rudin and Zuckerman.
He consults regularly with the governor and has even taken to calling him "George." He appears in cable television documentaries and is the subject of countless newspaper, magazine and television interviews. His language and demeanor are no longer that of a mere businessman, but rather of a master builder, statesman and visionary.
Sitting in the board room on the 18th floor of his Fifth Avenue office, the tall, reddish-haired developer, who is 72, recalled the urgent telephone call he received from Governor Pataki in the days after Sept. 11.
"What do you think we should do?" Mr. Silverstein recalled the governor asking. "I said: `I really feel we have an obligation to rebuild. If we don't, the terrorists will have won.' "
To some executives who know him, Mr. Silverstein has become intoxicated by the limelight, while others grumble about his penchant for draping his ambitions at the trade center in a cloak of patriotism and altruism. They say that every pronouncement is intended to enhance his legal claims against his insurers and the chances of grabbing a $7 billion insurance award.
"He's been thrust into the lead role of the most significant real estate transaction in the country," said one executive who knows him. "He's very aware of that and the publicity available to him."
Few of Mr. Silverstein's detractors are willing to talk about him publicly, and his friends say he feels a moral and legal obligation to rebuild the complex and put his own stamp on the New York skyline. "He has this enthusiasm about accomplishing what many people feel is unaccomplishable," said Leonard Boxer, Mr. Silverstein's friend and his real estate lawyer on the World Trade Center deal. "He's really put his mind to this, and he feels this will be his crowning achievement of his career. He's hell-bent on doing it."
Mr. Silverstein explained his position by recounting a conversation he had with his wife, Klara, shortly after the terrorist attack as they left the city for their usual weekend respite aboard their yacht.
"I remember telling my wife we had to make a decision," he said. "We could spend the rest of our lives building another boat and traveling around the world. Or we could do something productive with our lives like rebuilding the trade center. I told the governor and the mayor I'd give the next 10 years of my life to it."
He told a reporter the same story in the fall of 2001, although at the time he was dedicating five years of his life, not 10. Like a presidential candidate on the campaign trail, Mr. Silverstein has stayed on message, telling the same anecdotes and reiterating his position for the past 22 months.
"I have a leasehold obligation requiring me to pay the Port Authority $120 million a year in rent and an obligation to replace the 10 million square feet at the trade center," he said in an interview last Thursday. "I have an insurance policy. All of this puts me in a position to rebuild. We're going to move forward and do something we can all be proud of."
Aside from his focus and enthusiasm, two assets have kept Mr. Silverstein in the game: His name is on the 99-year lease for the commercial space at the trade center, even though he controlled it for only six weeks before the 10-million-square-foot complex was destroyed. And Mr. Silverstein, who invested $14 million of his personal fortune in the deal, also has a lawsuit against his insurers that could bring as much as $7 billion to the rebuilding effort.
That is something no state official or executive of the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey is willing to jeopardize.
"Larry has used the insurance argument to help thwart any attempts to remove him from a central role in the redevelopment process," said Robert D. Yaro, president of the Regional Plan Association and a critic of Mr. Silverstein's plans for the site.
Mr. Yaro and some city officials and community members would rather take a fresh look at the site and at the needs of Lower Manhattan before deciding what to build, cautioning against merely following the 30-year-old plans for a dense commercial development at the trade center.
In recent weeks, Governor Pataki has said he wants Mr. Silverstein to lay the cornerstone for the first office tower at the site in the summer of 2004. That would be in time for the Republican National Convention, though aides to the governor say the two events are not related.
"The governor has strengthened Larry's hand by creating an arbitrary deadline with the Republican convention," Mr. Yaro said. "That's the last piece that ensures that Larry has a controlling interest in what gets built."
Before taking control of the trade center in July 2001, in the biggest real estate deal in history, Mr. Silverstein was not well known outside the real estate industry.
Born in the Bronx and reared in Washington Heights, he is the son of a classical pianist who reluctantly became a broker in the 1920's after reading a book that said the source of all wealth was real estate. The developer started his career 50 years ago at his father's one-man downtown real estate leasing shop.
Mr. Silverstein, his father, Harry, and Mr. Silverstein's best friend, Bernard Mendik, began buying small buildings, one every six months. The friends later had a falling out and parted ways. By the 1980's, Mr. Silverstein controlled more than 10 million square feet of space in more than a dozen towers, including his biggest trophy, 120 Broadway, which is a few blocks from Wall Street in Lower Manhattan.
He had not achieved the fame or fortune of his hero, Harry Helmsley, but Mr. Silverstein had become chairman of the Real Estate Board, transforming it from a social club into a lobbying group. A gifted public speaker, he enhanced his reputation with his philanthropic work for the United Jewish Appeal and his sponsorship of the New York University real estate institute, where he teaches an annual course.
Mr. Silverstein was willing to take risks, and his biggest was in the 1980's with the construction of 7 World Trade Center, the skyscraper just north of the twin towers. His original tenant, Drexel Burnham Lambert, folded before the building was finished in 1987, and it took more than a year to land Salomon Brothers and avoid financial ruin.
Still, Mr. Silverstein cast his eye south to the twin towers. "From the day we finished 7 in 1987," he recalled, "I said I'd like to be in a position to control the destiny of the World Trade Center."
But in the early 1990's Mr. Silverstein, like many highly leveraged developers, took a financial pounding. He had to sell the Embassy Suites hotel in Times Square and give up his stakes in several other buildings, including 120 Broadway, though he bought it back a couple of years later.
Mr. Silverstein was no one's first choice to take control of the vast trade center complex in spring 2001 when the Port Authority decided to lease the property to a developer. "He was not only a dark horse, but an underdog," Mr. Boxer said. "He was up against the giants of the industry."
Indeed, fate seemed to conspire against him when he was hit by a car on the Upper East Side while in the midst of delicate negotiations with the Port Authority. But even in the hospital with a broken pelvis, Mr. Silverstein showed the same singlemindedness, optimism and financial acumen then that have kept him at the forefront of the roiling battle over rebuilding Lower Manhattan.
From his hospital bed, he told his doctors to cut off the morphine so he could meet with his advisers to hammer out his $3.2 billion bid. He came in second to Steven Roth, of Vornado Realty Trust, who bid $3.25 billion, but when the winning bid fell through, Mr. Silverstein did not allow himself to fail a second time. He took control of the trade center in July 2001, six weeks before two planes slammed into the twin towers, killing 2,800 people and destroying the complex, along with 7 World Trade Center.
Ultimately, his tenacity has moved the rebuilding process forward in a way that it might not have were it a political rather than a commercial venture.
"Larry has the drive to want to rebuild," said Kevin Rampe, the president of the Lower Manhattan Development Corporation. "I don't think that can be underestimated. While I think that the conflict and the confluence of interests at the site has been difficult, ultimately it has been helpful to the process and has led to a better result."
Even some officials who agree with Mr. Silverstein say he has a tin ear for political discourse. He annoyed the governor and Port Authority executives after the terrorist attack by publicly declaring his intention to rebuild the trade center before they had time to assess the situation. And top state officials complained that he unnecessarily riled community groups by loudly pushing to rebuild 7 World Trade Center. It was not that they disagreed with him; they just wished he would have taken a lower profile.
Mr. Silverstein was also less than diplomatic last February in what one participant described as a confrontational meeting with Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg, officials say. He told the mayor that the city's efforts to take control of the 16-acre site and billions of dollars in insurance proceeds were unrealistic. He also objected to Deputy Mayor Daniel L. Doctoroff's meetings with Jacques E. Dubois, chairman of Swiss Re America, the largest of Mr. Silverstein's insurers.
Mr. Doctoroff maintains that Mr. Silverstein's financial interest should not be the operating principle in the rebuilding effort. "The guiding force has to be excellence of design and creating the right demand for commercial, retail, cultural and other attractions," he said.
Mr. Silverstein's boardroom is lined with renderings and site plans for the complex. His offices are notably immaculate, even for a corporate headquarters. Reception-area chairs look as though they have never been used. A conference table is highly polished.
Mr. Silverstein's manner is similarly groomed. He speaks forcefully but deliberately, so that he sounds as though he is reading a prepared statement even when he is not.
For all his formality, though, Mr. Silverstein is remarkably informal with many others, whether in an attempt to show that he is an equal or simply to ingratiate himself. It is not always pleasing, however. People close to Governor Pataki say Mr. Silverstein sometimes addresses him as "George" rather than "Governor," and that it irks Mr. Pataki, although he has not asked Mr. Silverstein to stop.
Similarly, from the time Mr. Libeskind was named the winning designer of the trade center site, and Mr. Silverstein rushed to shake his hand after the news conference announcing the decision, he has referred to the architect as "Danny," occasionally "Danny Boy."
Still, Mr. Silverstein has successfully insisted on his own architect, relegating Mr. Libeskind to an advisory role, and beaten back attempts by the Bloomberg administration to take control of the site by swapping city-owned land at the airports for the 16 acres downtown.
"Larry believes that if he says it often enough, it will come true," said one real estate executive who has negotiated with him. "Sometimes it does."
Copyright 2003*The New York Times Company
I hope the buildings will look good - I don't think they will be very tall.
I'm not worrying much about that right now.
I bet the next renderings that'll be released won't be the ones.
Or maybe just one or two buildings among them.
"Mr. Libeskind is seeking a...........design ..........of the 1,776-foot tower" I feel (even though its not what everyone is talking about) that the freedom tower should be raised acouple of more feet so uppon its complishion it will hold the worlds tallest structure or what ever. Has anyone looked on www.Skyscrapers.com and seen these massive buildings proposed and approved in other cities;
This is a proposed project
*Project Three ---Empires Tower
*The complex will include a 150-floor, 600-meter skyscraper (with a 1500-room hotel, 18 restaurants, 3 night clubs, offices and a retail facility); three 25-floor additional blocks (two office towers and one apart-hotel); a yacht marina with space for 500 boats; an additional 4-floor retail facility with parking space for 1400 vehicles, a 10,000-person congress center (with 50 cinemas, a festival center and parking space for 1600 vehicles) and the "Three Empires Seaport". *
- Estimated cost of the overall project: $ 2,000,000,000. *
- Architect: Edifice International (Belgium). *
This is an approved project
*News: World's tallest building to rise in South Korea
Seoul: *There are arguments over whether this building will actually be the tallest in the world when completed in 2008. Other projects, most notably Burj Dubai of UAE, are also claiming the same future title. However, Seoul's plan for the 130-story International Business Center to be completed by 2008 in Northwestern Seoul, is nonetheless impressive.
The Korea Foreign Company Association (FORCA) announced in May that it received approval from the South Korean government to build the 580-meter skyscraper, which will house residential spaces for Foreigners in Seoul, a Five-star Hotel chain, an airport terminal, a movie theater, a fitness club and a convention center.
"We have completed the blueprint for the IBC and received permission from the related ministries to start construction next year," said the association.
and there is many more on the way......!
I might be alone on this one but i feel that asia is NYC's architectural rival especially hong kong. Has anybody seen there proposed and approved buildings. I'll take the Union square Phase 7 project for an example
*- The final design of this tower was made in 2001 after more than four design proposal changes. *
- This tower will form a "gateway" for Victoria Harbour with Two International Finance Center at the opposite side of the harbour. *
- Will become the tallest building in Hong Kong, surpassing Two International Finance Center by some 60 meters. *
- The original World's Tallest design (574m with a pyramidal top) was changed, and the new design is by KPF. *
- A 7-star hotel with 250 rooms will be located near the top portion of the tower. It will also include convention and conference facilities. *
- The 7-star hotel will be the highest hotel in the world, surpassing the one in Jin Mao Tower. *
What i think needs to be done is have the WTC building proposals raised a few meters so upon complishion we will stand out on top of all, it sounds selfish but it needs to be done if this city is ready to compete with the "to-be-built" buildings.
July 22, 2003
Planned Tower Is Likely to Stay at Northwestern Corner of Site
By EDWARD WYATT
Gov. George E. Pataki cast doubt yesterday on the possibility that the 1,776-foot tower proposed for the World Trade Center site by Daniel Libeskind will be moved to another location on the property, as has been proposed by Larry A. Silverstein, the developer who will build the tower.
In response to a question from a reporter at a news conference in Lower Manhattan, Mr. Pataki said that while rebuilding officials will consider "any alternatives" for the location of the tower, "there's going to have to be a compelling reason" to move the tower or to otherwise disrupt the layout of buildings proposed by Mr. Libeskind.
Mr. Libeskind proposed placing the tower at the northwest corner of the trade center site, along West Street between Fulton and Vesey Streets.
Mr. Silverstein has proposed moving the tower to the eastern portion of the trade center property, closer to the planned downtown transportation hub. The developer has said that the move would make the office space in the tower more marketable and would provide easier access for building residents while the remainder of the office buildings at the site are built over the next 10 years.
The Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, which owns the site, had previously asked Mr. Libeskind to study the possibility of moving the tower based on Mr. Silverstein's concerns. Possible locations for the tower will also be studied as part of the environmental review process.
A rebuilding official who is close to the governor said yesterday that Mr. Pataki meant to convey that the tower might be moved "if some sort of technical reason emerged" that would require a move.
"But we have not found one, and no one has raised one," the official said. "The reasons being given to us are strictly commercial."
Mr. Silverstein has proposed placing the tower either to the north of the transportation hub, in the block bounded by Vesey, Church, Fulton and Greenwich Streets, or immediately to the south of the station, which will be at the southeast corner of the restored intersection of Fulton and Greenwich Streets.
Copyright 2003 The New York Times Company
A small item concerning Daniel Libeskind's new headquarters: *
Libeskind rents office near Ground Zero
by Lore Croghan
Copyright 2003, Crain Communications, Inc
World Trade Center master planner Daniel Libeskind rented an office at a building three blocks from Ground Zero to house his headquarters, which he has moved from Berlin. He signed a 10-year lease at 2 Rector St. for a 17,400-square-foot floor.
Mr. Libeskind, who struck an agreement last week to collaborate with Larry Silverstein’s architect, David Childs, on the design of the first office tower on the site, is currently running Studio Daniel Libeskind in a small temporary space in another part of 2 Rector. The rent was not disclosed, but deals signed at the building in past months were priced in the high $20s per square foot.
Newmark & Co. Real Estate Inc. served as the architect’s broker. Capital Real Estate represented landlord Stellar Management Co.
Tower site fine as is, gov says
By GREG GITTRICH and MAGGIE HABERMAN
DAILY NEWS STAFF WRITERS
Gov. Pataki appeared yesterday to nix Ground Zero developer Larry Silverstein's bid to move the planned 1,776-foot tower to another portion of the site.
Architect Daniel Libeskind had called for the signature spire to rise at the northwest corner of Ground Zero. Silverstein is pushing to put it at the northeast corner so the building will be closer to the planned transit hub.
But Pataki - who has put the skyscraper project on the fast track - said yesterday there would have to be a "compelling reason" to tinker with Libeskind's plan.
"We had a tremendous public process, and out of that public process the Libeskind concept for Ground Zero was chosen," said Pataki, who selected Libeskind's design and holds tremendous sway over the rebuilding process.
"And I think there's going to have to be some compelling reason for us not to just move forward for the design and concept as it resulted from that public process," he added.
The decision over where the 1,776-foot spire is located at Ground Zero has taken on a sense of urgency. The questions must be settled in the next few weeks so Pataki's aggressive rebuilding schedule can be met.
Under the governor's plan, the steel for the tower would be in place by Sept. 11, 2006, the fifth anniversary of the terror attacks.
Silverstein has argued that putting the building near the transit hub would make the structure more commercially viable. The Port Authority, which owns the site, has agreed to study the issue.
Libeskind and his wife, Nina, who has done much of the negotiating with rebuilding officials on behalf of her husband, are against moving the tower.
"We have been asked by the PA and the [Lower Manhattan Development Corp.] to take a look at moving it," Nina Libeskind said.
"In good faith, that is what we are doing. We will come up with our preferred option in the next eight days. Right now, we feel it should still be in the northwest corner," she said.
Silverstein spokesman Howard Rubenstein said his client wouldn't comment on the issue while engineering and planning considerations are being discussed.
There is a history of tension between Silverstein and Libeskind. The biggest of those differences seemed to be resolved last week, when Libeskind and Silverstein's hand-picked architect, David Childs, hashed out a deal to collaborate on the tower's design.
Pataki is finally owning up to his responsibility in rebuilding downtown.
This whole debate is so typically short sighted by Silverstein. There will eventually be a building of roughly equal size on the NE and NW corners of the site. What difference does it make long term commercially if the one with the spire is 30 seconds closer to the transit terminal?
All the buildings are likely to have direct connections to the underground concourses in any case so the tenants will probably not even use the transit center.
July 23, 2003
Bus Parking Garage Proposed Near Trade Center
By EDWARD WYATT
Hoping to settle a dispute with the families of Sept. 11 victims, officials involved in the rebuilding of Lower Manhattan said yesterday that they had found an alternative site to park the buses that will bring tourists to the World Trade Center memorial.
The Lower Manhattan Development Corporation and the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey said they had begun discussions with the Battery Park City Authority about building an underground parking garage on an undeveloped parcel of land along West Street between Vesey and Murray Streets.
Officials had originally suggested building the garage underneath the memorial, but many of the victims' families objected, saying they regarded the final resting place of their loved ones as hallowed ground.
The West Street property is about 80,000 square feet. It currently houses an outdoor parking lot, but it is zoned to allow a 1.88-million-square-foot commercial office tower.
A cultural building, like an opera house or other large performance hall, is also under consideration for the site, said Matthew Higgins, chief operating officer of the development corporation. Planners have determined that the rebuilt trade center will not be large enough to accommodate such a hall, Mr. Higgins said.
Timothy S. Carey, president of the Battery Park City Authority, said that the authority had no plans to develop a new office building at the West Street site, but that any project would include underground parking.
Mr. Carey said that while there had been no formal discussions about a performance hall, "it could be a good fit." Any plan would have to be approved by the Battery Park City authority's board, he said.
Mr. Higgins said an underground parking lot at the site could accommodate more than 100 buses, roughly the amount of space needed for the more than five million visitors who are expected at the site each year.
Michael A. Petralia, a spokesman for the Port Authority of New York and New Jersey, said the garage would cost about $200 million. The money may come from $4.55 billion in federal transportation funds set aside for the trade center site.
Copyright 2003 The New York Times Company
This will certainly be contested by some of my isolationist
neighbors. One of the topics will be the ballfields across the street.
The site is big enough - largest undeveloped site in BPC. This proposal will influence the debate about the short West St tunnel. A tunnel will still have local at-grade traffic, and a way of getting bus passengers across Wesr St would have to be worked out (bridge like at the Intrepid?). Tunnel opponents may argue to build an underground pedestrian passageway under West St.
Pretty good view from Tribeca Pointe